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The Boy at Vicksburg <br />(Literary Digest, 1912)The Boy at Vicksburg
(Literary Digest, 1912)
After reading the attached article, we concluded that baby-sitters must have been pretty hard to come by in the 1860s - and perhaps you'll feel the same way, too, should you choose to read these columns that concern the recollections of Frederick Dent Grant (1850 1912) - son of General Ulysses S. Grant, who brought his son (who was all of 13 years-old at the time) to the blood-heavy siege of Vicksburg in the summer of 1863. The struggles he witnessed must have appealed to the boy, because he grew up to be a general, too.

The Victory at Vicksburg <br />(Harper's Weekly, 1863)The Victory at Vicksburg
(Harper's Weekly, 1863)
Here is a summation of Admiral Porter's official dispatch on the progress of his gunboats at Vicksburg during the July of 1863.
The Significance of the Union Victory at Vicksburg <br />(The National Park Service, 1954)The Significance of the Union Victory at Vicksburg
(The National Park Service, 1954)
"The great objective of the war in the West - the opening of the Mississippi River and the severing of the Confederacy - had been realized with the fall of Vicksburg."

"On July 9 [1863], the Confederate commander at Port Hudson, upon learning of the fall of Vicksburg, surrendered his garrison of 6,000 men. One week later the merchant steamboat Imperial tied up at the wharf at New Orleans, completing the 1,000-mile passage from St. Louis undisturbed by hostile guns. After two years of land and naval warfare, the Mississippi River was open, the grip of the South had been broken, and merchant and military traffic had now a safe avenue to the gulf of Mexico. In the words of Lincoln:

"The Father of Waters again goes unvexed to the sea".